Thursday, December 29, 2016

Fox Mid-Season Pilot Review: The Mick - Premieres Sunday (Jan. 1); WLNY Presents The Odd Couple on New Year's Day

The Mick

The Mick - Tuesdays at 8:30PM ET/PT on Fox
Special Premiere Sunday, January 1, 2017 at 8:00PM ET/5:00PM PT


by Vincent

Mackenzie, aka Mickey, is an unapologetic degenerate who suddenly finds herself stuck in affluent Greenwich, CT, raising her spoiled niece and nephews: Sabrina an ambitious, 18-going-on-30-year-old who is a worthy adversary to Mickey; Chip, 13, an arrogant, entitled neo-con-in-the-making with an extremely punchable face; and Ben, an adorably fragile nerd. It's pretty much everything Mickey has never wanted. Regardless, she's determined to rise to the occasion and transform these little monsters into honest, hard-working, decent members of society - something she knows absolutely nothing about.

Cast Details:

Kaitlin Olson as Mackenzie Murphy
Sofia Black D'Ella as Sabrina Pemberton
Thomas Barbusca as Chip Pemberton
Jack Stanton as Ben Pemberton
Carla Jimenez as Alba
Susan Park as Liz

Kaitlin Olson (Mackenzie) is an actress best known for her role as Dee Reynolds on the long-running hit sitcom It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. She is also known for her role as Destiny in Finding Dory.

Sofia Black D'Elia (Sabrina) is an actress previously known for her role in shows such as Gossip Girl, The Messengers and The Night Of.

Thomas Barbusca (Chip) is a young actor known for his guest spots on shows such as American Horror Story, The League, and Another Period. He will also appear in the upcoming Netflix reboot of One Day at a Time.

Jack Stanton (Ben) is a young actor. The Mick will be his first role in television/film.

Carla Jimenez (Alba) is an actress known for her recurring roles on Raising Hope and Last Man Standing, and for her guest spots on shows such as Community, The Mindy Project, and 2 Broke Girls.

Susan Park (Liz) is an actress best known for her role as Christine on HBO's Vice Principals. She has also appeared in recurring roles on shows such as Fresh Off the Boat, Fargo, and Life in Pieces.

Pilot Plot:

"Pilot" (Airs Sunday, January 1 at 8:00PM)

An unapologetic degenerate moves to affluent Greenwich, CT, to raise the outrageously spoiled kids of her wealthy sister and brother-in-law, who have fled the country to avoid prosecution for illegal activities in the all-new "Pilot" special premiere episode.

"The Grandparents" (Airs Tuesday, January 3 at 8:30PM)

The Pemberton kids learn some lessons in "tough love," when Mickey (Kaitlin Olson) calls in their overly strict grandmother (guest star Concetta Tomei) to discipline them. Meanwhile, Mickey reunites with Jimmy (Scott MacArthur) and brings Alba (Carla Jimenez) the ride.

Analysis:

For nearly 12 years, Kaitlin Olson has quietly been knocking it out of the park on It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, the funniest member of one of TV's funniest ensembles. The Mick feels like a very deliberate attempt to take her talents and deliver them to a broader audience in slightly more accessible fashion – and it does a pretty good job of it, as Olson carries most of the show in the four episodes I've watched so far. It's very easy to see The Mick being completely insufferable, given the amount of clich├ęs at work here, from "total mess who winds up having a heart of gold" to "spoiled rich kids learn that money isn't everything." Luckily, the show manages to avoid these pratfalls, mostly thanks to Olson's comic talents, but there are enough well-crafted punchlines and cleverly subverted expectations in these first handful of episodes that I'm willing to have some faith there's more here beyond just a really solid lead performance. The kids are surprisingly well-developed by the end of the fourth episode, managing to go slightly beyond their textbook stereotypes and feel a little more like actual human beings than you might expect from spoiled rich kids in a sitcom. And the show seems to acknowledge that its premise is a little rote, given how many times a potential "teachable moment" is quickly and hilariously botched and ridiculed.

Still, the potential for irritation isn't completely absent from The Mick – there are several moments that feel like they're trying a bit too hard to be "network TV edgy," such as an unnecessary plot where Mickey drugs Alba (the family's housekeeper) that doesn't really add anything to the show other than "hey, we're doing this kind of stuff, isn't that cool?!" There are also a handful of moments where Mickey's neglect of the children she's been tasked with caring cross the line into genuinely disturbing, which would be fine if The Mick was able to go as dark with its humor as Olson's other series, but its status as a network sitcom revolving around family will likely keep it from going there. The Mick is eventually going to have to sort out exactly what kind of comedy it wants to be, but for now there's enough promise here that I'm willing to stick around for Olson's performance and some solid, well-earned laughs while the rest of the show works itself out.

Conclusion:

The Mick has an incredibly strong lead performance, surprisingly well-developed characters, and some genuinely hilarious jokes and comic set-ups that help it navigate some tonal wonkiness and overly-hasty plotting. The show has some annoying tendencies and sometimes falls into the pattern of "edginess for the sake of edginess," but there is enough to like here that it's worth tuning into, and hopefully it can be given enough time to sort itself out and be the truly great starring vehicle for Kaitlin Olson that it has the potential to be.

Final Numbers (out of 5 stars):

Watchability: 3/5
Funniness: 4/5
Overall: 4/5

Discuss the show after you watch it on Sunday, January 1, 2017 at 8:00PM ET/5:00PM PT on our message board.

Related Links:

  • Fox.com Official Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • The Mick Photo Gallery

    Preview:





  • The Odd Couple

    One of the most beloved comedies in television history will light up the airwaves at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Day, Sunday, January 1 in New York City, when WLNY-TV (Channels 10/55) presents The Odd Couple marathon from 12 a.m. to 9 a.m. and from 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m (the only break is at 9am for a half-hour for Sunday Mass). The marathon will include 41 episodes from the classic series, culminating with the 1973 "My Strife in Court" episode, featuring Felix attempting to act as his own attorney in court (8:00 p.m.) and the 1975 "Felix Remarries" episode when Felix convinces his ex-wife to remarry him (8:30 p.m.). WLNY's The Odd Couple marathon will also feature the 1973 "The Ides of April" episode where Felix inadvertently gets Oscar called in for an audit from the IRS (3:00 p.m.), 1973's "Let's Make a Deal" episode, where Felix and Oscar appear on a game show in an attempt to win Felix a new bed (5:00 p.m.) and the 1973 "Take My Furniture Please" episode where both Felix and Oscar take turns redecorating their apartment (6:00 p.m.).


    Sitcoms Airing Tonight

    Thursday, April 26

    The Big Bang Theory - "The Monetary Insufficiency" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
    Sheldon goes to Vegas to win money for science. Also, Penny and Bernadette take Amy wedding dress shopping, but her terrible choice entangles them in a web of lies.

    Young Sheldon - "A Dog, A Squirrel, and a Fish Named Fish" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
    A battle erupts between the Coopers and Sparks when the Sparks’ new dog terrorizes Sheldon.

    Mom - "A Taco Bowl and a Tubby Seamstress" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT)
    Christy is concerned that she and Bonnie might lose their apartment when Bonnie locks horns with the tough new building owner, Rita (Patti Lupone).

    Life in Pieces - "#TBT: House Destiny Introduction Retirement" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT)
    The Short family’s quirky history is revealed with stories of when Tim met Heather’s family for the first time; when Jen and Greg bought their dream home; when Matt got sidetracked after he saw Colleen while waiting for a blind date; and John’s last flight before retiring.

    Superstore - "Aftermath" (NBC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
    Amy (America Ferrera) and Jonah (Ben Feldman) deal with the consequences of their recent interactions. Meanwhile Glenn (Mark McKinney) and Dina (Lauren Ash) enlist Garrett's (Colton Dunn) help to win the store a visit from Cloud 9's CEO.

    A.P. Bio - "Walleye" (NBC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
    Jack (Glenn Howerton) successfully convinces Miles (Tom Bennett) that Devin (Jacob McCarthy) is his illegitimate son. Durbin (Patton Oswalt), Mary (Mary Sohn), Stef (Lyric Lewis) and Michelle (Jean Villepique) clash on the Sadie Hawkins dance theme.

    Will & Grace - "Staten Island Fairy" (NBC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
    Jack's (Sean Hayes) intimacy issues are challenged by a closeted boyfriend. Will (Eric McCormack) and Grace (Debra Messing) sell their new line of bedding on TV.

    Champions - "Nepotism" (NBC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
    As Michael waits to hear if the musical he wrote will be picked for the freshman show, Vince is accused of treating some staff members better than others.

    Nobodies - "Kristen's Wiig" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
    Rachel and Larry attempt to convince Kristen Wiig to play Jen in the pilot for "Open Dorf Policy"; Hugh gets put in an uncomfortable position when an accident lands Sam in the hospital.

    Atlanta - "North of the Border" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
    The possibility arises to make a move; it is believed Paper Boi will be at a pajama party.

    Complete TV Listings


    Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of April 23)

    Thursday, April 26

    • Don Cheadle (House of Lies/The Golden Palace) - Catch Don on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
    • Method Man (Method & Red) - Method Mani s a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Adam Pally (Making History/Happy Endings/The Mindy Project) - Adam appears on The Opposition with Jordan Klepper at 11:30pm on Comedy Central.
    • Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) - Chris visits Conan at 11pm on TBS.
    • Jason Biggs (Mad Love/Drexell's Class) - Jason and his wife Jenny Mollen are guests on The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
    • Dylan McDermott (LA to Vegas) - Dylan reveals role he lost to Harry Connick, Jr. on a repeat of Harry, so check your local listings.
    • Rob Riggle (Golan the Insatiable/Gary Unmarried) - Rob is a guest on Good Mythical Morning with Rhett & Link on YouTube.


    New on DVD/Blu-ray (February/March/April)

    Diff'rent Strokes - The Complete Seventh Season Green Acres - The Complete Fifth Season Mayberry R.F.D. - The Complete First Season One Day at a Time - Season Two Perfect Strangers  - The Complete Third Season

    02/06 - All in the Family - Seasons 1-5
    02/06 - Bosom Buddies - The Complete Series
    02/06 - Women of the House - Complete 12 Episode Series
    02/13 - Broad City - Season 4
    02/13 - Three's Company - The Complete Series - Come and Knock on Our Door Collection
    02/27 - Diff'rent Strokes - The Complete Seventh Season
    02/27 - Green Acres - The Complete Fifth Season
    02/27 - Mayberry R.F.D. - The Complete First Season
    03/06 - Atlanta - The Complete First Season
    03/06 - Curb Your Enthusiasm - The Complete Ninth Season
    03/13 - The New Adventures of Old Christine - The Complete First Season
    03/27 - One Day at a Time - Season Two
    04/03 - Ballers - The Complete Third Season (Blu-ray)
    04/03 - 90's Sitcom (Just Shoot Me!/The Larry Sanders Show/Wings) Starter Set - Season 1 & 2 Bundle
    04/10 - Vice Principals - The Compelte Series
    04/17 - Perfect Strangers - The Complete Third Season
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